Questions to Ask Before Accepting a Motorcycle Accident Settlement
If a negligent driver caused your motorcycle accident in North Carolina, you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries. There are two main ways to pursue compensation. You can pursue compensation through the at-fault driver's insurance company or a personal injury lawsuit against the negligent party or parties. As you pursue compensation for your injuries, one of the most important decisions you will need to make is whether or not to accept a settlement. In many cases, insurance companies will offer victims a settlement.
Generally, the first settlement offer is far too low. Speaking to an attorney before accepting a settlement agreement can help protect yourself. An experienced motorcycle accident attorney can negotiate maximum recovery for your settlement. When considering whether to accept a settlement offer, here are some questions you should ask.1. Will You Need Additional Medical Treatment?
Medical expenses comprise a large portion of motorcycle accident victims' damages. You may not realize how important it is to wait to sell your case until you completely understand what your Medical Treatments will look like in the future. For example, if you have suffered a spinal cord injury or a traumatic brain injury, it could take weeks or even months for you to have a realistic picture of the ongoing symptoms with which you will need to contend.
For this reason, it is wise to avoid settling your claim until you completely recover from your injuries or recover as much as you can. At that point, you can receive a more accurate prognosis from your doctor. It is common for motorcycle accident victims to suffer multiple injuries that can take time to heal. If you settle your case too soon, you will not be able to pursue additional compensation if your medical expenses exceed what you have recovered in the settlement agreement.2. Is the Settlement Offer Far Too Low?
Insurance companies are for-profit companies and will offer a quick settlement on claims so they can pay out the claim and close it up. You should be wary if the insurance company is pressuring you to accept a quick settlement offer. They are most likely trying to quickly sell your claim because they realize it is a higher-value claim. If they give you less compensation than you deserve, they can save money and help their bottom line. In almost every case, a first settlement offer needs to be higher. You cannot negotiate an offer once you have accepted it, so it is wise to discuss it with your attorney before agreeing to it.3. How Strong Is Your Evidence?
You will need to prove that the negligent driver or driver caused your motorcycle accident to recover compensation from them or their insurance policy. Doing so requires proving the seriousness of your injuries and negligence. When deciding whether to sell your case, an attorney can help you evaluate the strength of your evidence. If you have strong evidence against the at-fault driver, you have a stronger claim and may be able to recover more compensation. If the insurance company still refuses to offer you a fair offer, settling your claim may be better than going to trial.4. What Are the Limits of the Insurance Policy?
Another factor to consider is the limits of the at-fault driver’s insurance company. Regardless of the strength of your case and how much evidence you have, the insurance company is responsible for paying you, and they will decide whether to pay you up to the policy limits. An attorney can help you obtain a copy of the at-fault party's insurance policy to verify how much insurance coverage they have before you agree to settle the claim.5. What Is Your Attorney Advising You to Do?
Finally, it is wise to consider the input of an experienced motorcycle accident attorney. Your attorney can review your case, the evidence in your case, the policy limits, and all other factors and help you understand your case’s value.Reach Out to a Skilled Charlotte Motorcycle Accident Attorney
If you have been seriously injured in a motorcycle accident that was not your fault, you may be entitled to compensation through an insurance settlement or personal injury lawsuit. The trial-ready attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, are prepared to fight for you and your right to compensation. Contact our Charlotte, North Carolina, motorcycle accident attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, today to schedule a free case evaluation and learn more about how we can fight for you.